17 May First Signs of Hypochondria and [2 Ways] to Cure Health Anxiety
Table of Contents
- 1 Symptoms: How To Know If You Are A Hypochondriac?
- 2 How To Cure Hypochondria?
- 3 8 Frequently Asked Questions On Hypochondria
- 3.1 #1. What triggers hypochondria?
- 3.2 #2. Do hypochondriacs live longer?
- 3.3 #3. What should you not say to a hypochondriac?
- 3.4 #4. Is Googling your symptoms bad?
- 3.5 #5. Is hypochondria a form of OCD?
- 3.6 #6. Does exercise help hypochondria?
- 3.7 #7. Can your mind create physical symptoms?
- 3.8 #8. Does health anxiety ever go away?
- 4 Final Thoughts: What Else Can Be Done?
What if these blotches turn out to be vitiligo. Am I really suffering from it?
How to cure vitiligo? Is this a tumour?
The rapid escalation of such unnecessary spirals of thoughts about having these ailments compels you to google these terms.
However, what you should RATHER be searching for is how to cure hypochondria.
Yes, if the degree of your anxiety is prolonged and intense, you’re likely to suffer from hypochondria, aka illness anxiety disorder.
The never-ending medical appointments and even their ‘all good’ report fail to respite those who are hypochondriac.
Now, simply put, you have 2 options.
You can either worsen this disorder by watering your constant worries about having a disease.
Or on the other hand, you can look for its treatments explaining exactly how to cure hypochondria.
Yes, you’re wise because you chose the second option.
Now, we, in turn, are gonna walk you through some of the best measures to cure hypochondria.
However, before beginning the discussion about how you can cure hypochondria, it’s important to look for signs which point towards the intensity and the relevance of this disorder.
So, do you suspect you’re a hypochondriac or can a hypochondriac make themselves feel symptoms? Let us dive in..
Symptoms: How To Know If You Are A Hypochondriac?
A better understanding of the symptom of any disease helps in deciding the suitable treatment for the same.
Similarly, before being curious about the cure of health anxiety, we should know the symptoms interlinked with this disorder.
Now, hypochondriac symptoms can often be easily identified.
However, it ranges from being very mild to severe sometimes.
Below-listed, we’ve some of its behavioural symptoms.
- Preoccupied with a constant fear of having or developing a serious ailment.
- Undergoing frequent diagnosis for serious health conditions.
- Reassuring negative results, post-diagnosis.
- Avoiding social interactions for fear of getting health distress.
- Freaking out over minor body changes and linking it with something risky.
- Spending a major part of your time, googling symptoms of severe illnesses.
A typical example can be like…
Linking occasional chest pain with cardiac arrest.
Subsequently, the development of these behavioural symptoms is followed by major REAL health problems like depression, fatigue, irritation, and anxiety attacks.
At worst, it intensifies only to get transformed into severe hypochondria, including health anxiety physical symptoms like abdominal pain, nausea, urinary pain, etc.
Thus, catering to these distresses becomes even more crucial.
So, how can we do that?
By undergoing treatment that combats all the above-mentioned symptoms, either by medications or by therapy. And sometimes, both.
Yes, this health anxiety can be treated.
The following section includes 2 approaches used in curing hypochondria.
How To Cure Hypochondria?
The treatment is broadly classified into lifestyle changes and professional help as far as curing hypochondria is concerned.
Thus, to make it more comprehensive, we’re gonna discuss them exclusively.
Firstly, the lifestyle changes.
#1. Lifestyle Changes AKA Self-Care
This approach steers clear of any complicated procedures and rather caters to hypochondria on a personal level.
This approach is often brought into play during the initial stage of somatic symptom disorder.
Although the results will be gradual but long-term if carried out effectively.
This method can be further elucidated into a list of measures that contain answers to the question, how to cure hypochondria?
#1. Stop Googling Diseases and Symptoms
Okay, very basic.
It all comes from what you’re searching online. It’s high time you stop searching for symptoms as please note Google is not your doctor.
It can’t be 100% right. Instead, do some window or real shopping to distract yourself from googling symptoms.
Or rather engage in any other activities of your interest.
#2. Be Honest With Your Doctor
Never trust your patient has become a catchphrase for all doctors.
No wonder why. People have this tendency to excessively lie to their doctor. Let’s break this chain.
Especially, if you’re a hypochondriac.
It becomes important to share even the smallest of your worries so that they could suggest the best treatment for you.
#3. Talk To A Friend
A friend in need is a friend indeed.
Well, you don’t have to sing these lines to make your pal uncomfortable.
You don’t wanna sound clingy either. Just address your problem and share what’s bothering you lately, and ask for help.
Studies have shown that excess caffeine is linked with anxiety.
Those suffering from illness anxiety disorder are pretty vulnerable to caffeine.
Thus, try cutting your daily caffeine intake gradually or replace it with orange juice.
#5. Set a Sleep Schedule
Binge-watching shows is a good option when trying to distract yourself from googling symptoms.
However, make sure it doesn’t interfere with your sleeping schedule.
#6. Reverse Your Emotions
Daydreaming can affect your realistic viewpoint, true. However, in the case of hypochondria, a little bit of daydreaming will do no harm.
You can do this by spinning off your negative emotions with positive ones.
For instance, Replace “I have vitiligo, life will be hard now” with, “we finally have a vaccine to cure vitiligo.”
Now, in case these measures do not prove effective, you can head towards a bigger approach; professional help.
#2. Professional Help
This method is generally used in the case of severe hypochondria and includes medications and therapies.
The measures used under this approach show results sooner than the former.
Moreover, this method is often chosen in case one starts developing hypochondriac pain.
The treatments are only implemented only after carrying out a proper hypochondriac test.
It is further sub-categorised into many treatments implications like:
#1. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, as the name suggests, targets the behaviour responsible for your anxiety and breaks your reluctance on the same.
Let us understand this with an example.
For instance, a person will purposely be taken out for social gathering if they fear that hanging out will expose them to any disease.
Thus, we can say CBT is done by recognising and confronting your irrelevant beliefs and replacing them with a realistic viewpoint.
#2. Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs)
It is a type of antidepressant medication that is effective as well as safe for treating hypochondria.
SSRIs are curated to restrain your blood from excessive serotonin absorption by your brain.
Serotonin is often called the ‘feel-good’ chemical circulated in the brain.
Note: We recommend you look for the FDA certifications when going for an SSRI.
Used as a pioneer to treat several mental disorders, Bibliotherapy comes under CBT.
Under this method, the use of literature is maximised to treat hypochondria.
This includes storytelling, poetry, or creative writing, all with a healing purpose to allow one to recognise their challenges. And, thereafter, providing strategies to cater to them.
All these promote polishing practical skills like problem solving, understanding, and self-awareness.
#4. Group Therapy
Under this method, people with similar challenges are brought together for interaction.
The effectiveness of this method is higher because people can relate to each other.
When exposed to a similar group and their challenges, one patient observes the anxiety problems of others.
As a result, this helps them understand how they’re unknowingly inviting troubles for themselves and subsequently helps them understand how to cure their hypochondria.
This treatment is very conventional in tackling even the extreme cases of hypochondria.
#5. Behavioural Stress Management
Anxiety, at some point in time, is inevitable.
However, it becomes a serious obstacle if it becomes a chronic health condition.
Stress in the case of hypochondriac patients is mostly behavioural.
Thus, we sometimes rely on behavioural stress management to identify the root of stress and reduce it till gone.
For instance, write down the things that are constantly bothering you. Or go outdoors for physical exercise like cycling, swimming, biking, etc.
Okay, so that covers the entire ‘how to cure hypochondria’ section. We hope the measures were informative and will further be helpful for you.
However, the discussion does not completely rest here.
Those concerned with this anxiety disorder have been asking a few repeated questions lately.
While we advise them not to Google a lot, these below-mentioned questions cover everything that’s rather important for hypochondriac patients.
8 Frequently Asked Questions On Hypochondria
Here, we’ve covered some of the frequently asked questions by those suffering from hypochondria.
Please read the complete answer for reaching a better conclusion.
#1. What triggers hypochondria?
The triggers of hypochondria are varied and include childhood trauma or prolonged stress.
Apart from all this, excessive browsing for symptoms also worsens this illness anxiety disorder. Furthermore, it can also be genetic.
#2. Do hypochondriacs live longer?
Well, surprisingly, yes.
Hypochondriacs DO live longer than a person who’s free from it.
Despite the life of a hypochondriac being a challenging one, they have a cleaner bill on health.
This theory has been quoted by researchers from the University of Edinburgh.
Well, this could probably be possible because a hypochondriac invests both their attention and money for their health.
#3. What should you not say to a hypochondriac?
Well, it’s simpler than you think.
Just make sure that you don’t pass judgmental comments or through jibes over their anxiety.
In simple words, be optimistic with them as they already weigh too much in pessimism.
Moreover, if they say they’ve some disease, don’t freak them out by nodding or adding more lines to their conversation.
#4. Is Googling your symptoms bad?
Googling symptoms of any disease can terribly trigger Hypochondria.
Now that doesn’t mean that you should totally refrain from googling anything.
But, yes, you might wanna keep your fingers away from the search bar for googling symptoms of diseases.
This is because many diseases share common symptoms.
For instance, chest pain is the symptom of a cardiac arrest.
On the other hand, it can simply mean that a person has minor gastric distress.
Thus, consult your doctor before reaching any conclusion.
#5. Is hypochondria a form of OCD?
OCD and Hypochondria, both come under the types of mental disorder.
Moreover, they share a lot of distress similarities and common symptoms.
However, that doesn’t mean that both can be used as interchangeable terms.
OCD results in spirals of compulsion, whereas hypochondria is associated with a continuous fear of having a serious disease.
To simply put, Hypochondria is not a form of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.
#6. Does exercise help hypochondria?
Several exercise and physical activities can help bring down health anxiety.
Not only this but exercising regularly can also alleviate hypochondriac pain including that of the abdomen.
Moreover, it keeps you distracted from all those typical hypochondriac thoughts and makes you feel more alive.
#7. Can your mind create physical symptoms?
Your mental coordination often has effects on your physical stimulus.
So, chances are that your mind can create physical symptoms when suffering from hypochondria.
A clinical psychologist, Carla Manley states that people who suffer from any sort of mental illness are very prone to develop physical health conditions.
This includes fever, headaches, insomnia, abdomen pain, nausea, jitteriness, and much more.
However, there is no such compulsion that you’re gonna develop these symptoms.
#8. Does health anxiety ever go away?
Well, it all depends on your consistent efforts to combat particular health anxiety.
Health anxiety can go away if you learn how to deal with it and prevent it thereafter.
However, it may reappear in some vulnerable situations like making one of the crucial decisions of your life or losing someone you love the most, or, at worse, an unfortunate accident.
So, we now have answers to all those tingling questions like what not to say to a hypochondriac or how to stop being a hypochondriac. And above all, we now know how to cure hypochondria.
This fight with Hypochondria can be daunting. However, it becomes way easier if you inculcate all the measures mentioned under the Lifestyle changes section.
These are of great help as they not only help you treat hypochondria naturally but are safe too.
Nevertheless, medications and therapies are equally effective in developing self-awareness and problem-solving skills.
Now, it’s time to wrap things up and re-highlight a few points from the discussion.
Final Thoughts: What Else Can Be Done?
Don’t think that things have gone out of control because they haven’t.
Everything is still under control and in your hands. You can put an end to all those unnecessary appointments and rather reserve that time for doing something recreational.
Moreover, love is not bound to any matter. Therefore, you can now stop googling, how to love someone if you’re a hypochondriac.
Just make sure, your worries do not become your need for survival.
Times will be difficult if this disorder reappears. However, you can still get over it by being bold and logical enough.
Furthermore, weapons like lifestyle changes and professional help are of great benefits to keep hypochondria at bay.
Putting all the pieces together, it’s always the 1st time and never too late to begin.
So, remove your glasses of irrational thoughts and replace that with positivity to cure your hypochondria.